Calling All Green Schools! Now’s the Time to Show Your ‘Green’ Colors

Does your school provide nutritious, well-balanced meals for its students? Or, does your school promote fitness initiatives or allocate outdoor time for students during the school day? Maybe your school is reducing its footprint through energy efficiency measures, solar panel installations or geothermal efforts? Well, if you answered “Yes!” to any or all of these questions, YOUR school has the chance to receive a prestigious, national award from the U.S. Department of Education for its sustainability efforts.

How to get started? Where can you apply? Look no further than the pilot year of the U.S. Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools program. This award program seeks to recognize schools that have demonstrated exemplary achievements in reducing their environmental impact, improving occupancy health and well-being, and educating students about sustainability. Sound like some of your school’s efforts? Well, you need to have your Chief State School Officer (CSSO) sign up by Tuesday, Nov. 22nd in order for your state to participate! So contact your CSSO now to officially sign up your state!

Even President Obama and Education Secretary Arne Duncan have declared that green schools are “critical to schools’ fiscal health and our nation’s economy.” On the Let’s Move blog today, Secretary Duncan had the following to say about the benefits of green schools:

“And we know from the First Lady’s work that healthy habits, environmental education and green facilities schools are as vital to individual students as they are to their schools and the nation. High standards of nutrition, fitness and facility conditions improve student and staff health, attendance and productivity, and enhance achievement and engagement, particularly in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).” 

Currently, multiple states across the U.S. have declared their participation in the new Green Ribbon Schools program. Don’t let your state miss out on this incredible opportunity! Contact your CSSO now or email our Education team if you have any questions. Good luck!